The View from a Drawbridge

The random musings of a bridgetender with entirely too much time on her hands.

Manpologies

The View from a Drawbridge

Warning: this post may trigger some people. It certainly triggers me. This started off as a Facebook post that someone put up to commiserate with fellow females about the strange way many men “apologize.” But it has turned into so much more. Until I saw the many responses that poured forth, I didn’t realize how chronic and insidious this is. Whether it’s bosses or politicians or fathers or partners, I suspect all of us have heard at least a few of these things at least once in our lives. And it’s not okay.

So what follows are some of the responses this Facebook thread elicited. Feel free to add yours in the comments below.

  • Sorry you took that the wrong way.
  • I don’t remember that, sorry.
  • God! I’m sorry already. Are you on the rag or something?
  • It’s because you push back too much.
  • Why are you such a sensitive b****.
  • Learn to take a compliment, sweetheart.
  • You’re making too much of it.
  • There’s no need to get hysterical.
  • You sure are crabby. Are you having a hot flash?
  • You’ll never get a man, acting like this.
  • I guess I’ll just never speak again.
  • I get it and I’m sorry, but don’t you think you need to apologize to ME?
  • You shouldn’t feel that way.
  • It was just a joke. Sheesh. Didn’t know you were so sensitive.
  • You used to have a sense of humor.
  • If it makes you feel better…
  • B****, please.
  • You need to toughen up.
  • Did you remember to take your pill?
  • I’m sorry I’m not a mind reader.
  • Oh, calm down.
  • I’m sorry you got upset. It’s just your low self esteem!
  • I understand some people were offended by my remarks. (This last should be classified as a Politi-Manpology.)

The most terrifying one, though, is “Look what you made me do.” If you’re in a relationship with someone who says that, please run for the nearest exit. It never ends well.

The thing I find most hurtful, though, is no apology at all. I haven’t spoken to one of my best friends in the whole world for about a year now because of that. I got tired of giving him a pass on the rare occasion when he said something out of line. He needs to grow up and apologize for bad behavior. I doubt he ever will, and I miss him every single day, but there comes a time when you have to stop tolerating disrespect.

Before you even say it, I realize that very few people on earth are good at apologizing. I realize women can say awful things, too. But, at the risk of sounding like I’m man-bashing, it does seem that men are kind of trained up to be confident that if there is a problem, it can’t possibly be theirs. They’re also taught to believe that women’s feelings are irrational and illegitimate, regardless of how piss-poor the man’s behavior might be. And that, indeed, is a problem.

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13 thoughts on “Manpologies

  1. cupitonians says:

    Ugh, yes. I don’t know a woman who hasn’t faced this. Manpologize should definitely be added to the dictionary!

  2. Carole says:

    Daily: “What’s your problem?”
    Him: “Good Morning.” Me: “Good Morning.” Him: “Are you irritated about something?” Me: “No,I just said “Good Morning”. Him: “Hmmmmm.”

    1. Sigh. I wish you were out of that situation.

      1. Carole says:

        LOL. It is a full moon… I’m under siege, so it is deep breaths & baby step, and prayer.

      2. Hang tough. And the moon is no excuse for bad behavior.

    2. That, and it sounds like he knows he has a lot to be defensive about.

  3. Lyn says:

    “Look what you made me do.”; from experience, by the time they’re using that excuse, it’s too late to simply run. Should have left 12 Manpologies sooner. It ended like this; “God, 3 seconds and I’ll have to hear about it for the rest of my life.” No apologies, just accusing me of being the offender for holding him accountable for a rape that occurred months after I’d run. A list of how they justify actual sexual abuse is so much worse. Then there’s statements from other men (and some women) dismissing it as your fault; “Why did you let him?, which should be considered an act of complicity. I believe the more they get away with these Manpologies, the more emboldened they become. We need a list of strong statements and affirmations that holds men accountable for them, on the spot, so they’re less likely to take it to that next level. My abuser got away with using more than half your list before he took it to that level. Yes, I know not all men will go that far, but there’s no way to know which ones will until it’s too late. Just say NO to all Manpologies.

    1. I’m so sorry. Truly. You deserved better.

      1. Lyn says:

        One of my large invisible scars that reminds me I can heal and move on. I’m stronger now than my abuser. Just warning others where unchecked Manpologies can lead to. Shut them down or walk away because no one deserves this kind of disrespect, ever.

  4. Angiportus Librarysaver says:

    Add “grownupologies” for parents who aren’t sorry enough for what they did to their kids. “Pseudopology” covers both these and many others. My mom is fond of saying “that’s life” even when it was her fault, which isn’t that often, but still. She also claims to not remember any of the times her man assaulted me in front of her eyes, but that’s another story. I decided I’d have real apologies ready for when I know I should and fake ones for when I run into idiots, but it’s an ongoing learning process.

    1. Yes, I got that “Your making too much of it” from a parent, too. People can be a force for good or a force for evil, or mistake makers who genuinely apologize. It’s all so complicated.

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